A five-year-old boy from Coulsdon has inspired supporters to raise £17,000 at a special event to fund ventilators that will help save the lives of children across Croydon.
Mason Mole was just 18 months old and fighting for his life after a virus left him with critical breathing difficulties. His life was saved, in part, by the quick thinking of medics at Croydon University Hospital and the vital ventilator that helped him take his breaths when he couldn’t manage on his own.
Last week, Croydon Health Charity welcomed Mason’s mum Kelly and his sister Amelia as guests of honour at the Little Breaths launch event, held at the Brit School, to raise money for two much-needed machines.
The state-of-the-art ventilators will provide vital treatment for the sickest children in the borough, from very small babies to young people aged up to 16.
The event raised more than £17,000 on the night, including a £10,000 donation from South London and Beckenham Crematoria, contributions from an auction and raffle, and a donation by the school’s parents and teachers association, who contributed a share of the takings from the bar to the crucial appeal.
The appeal needs to raise £46,000 by September to buy the ventilators.
“I lived every parent’s worst nightmare when Mason fell desperately ill and I am thankful to the clinical team at Croydon University Hospital who looked after him so well,” Kelly Mole said.
“Mason had no underlying health conditions and was playing in the garden just a few hours before being admitted to A&E. The ventilator helped to save his life as it took over when his weak body could no longer function.
“Thankfully, Mason is now a fit and healthy five-year-old boy who loves football and other sports.”
As many as 70 children are admitted to Croydon University Hospital every year requiring mechanical ventilation to help them breathe for conditions such as sepsis and heart failure. The Trust has also seen an increase in the number of children admitted with respiratory problems since 2020, including covid, flu and Respiratory Syncytial Virus infection (RSV).
Croydon also has one of the highest rates of any borough in London for children needing hospital care for asthma.
Hazel Daish, a consultant in paediatric medicine at Croydon Health Services NHS Trust, said: “Ventilators are a lifeline when our patients need us the most and, like with Mason, can prevent every parent’s worst nightmare when their child is critically unwell. We are grateful for any support to help us achieve our fundraising target.”
- Donations can be made via Just Giving by clicking here, or by contacting Laura Kennedy, head of fundraising, email@example.com.
- Further information about the Croydon Health Charity and Little Breaths can be found at www.croydonhealthcharity.org.uk/
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